Craig Monroe Rumors

Random Rumors: Erstad, Gagne, Podsednik

Here’s a smattering of random rumors.

  • The Twins have tried and failed to acquire Mike Piazza, Jermaine Dye, and Kevin Mench.  Instead of Dye, the White Sox offered up 33 year-old outfielder Darin Erstad, he of the .671 OPS. The Twins passed.
  • Eric Gagne will apparently earn Type A status as a free agent, despite pitching only two innings in 2006.  Rob Bradford has the details.  This was apparently a big factor for the Red Sox in making the deal.
  • The Chicago Sun-Times debunks a rumor that the Cubs are trying to trade for Scott Podsednik.  How come I wasn’t told about this rumor previously?  Who started it?  I feel left out. 
  • The Pirates and Tigers are still talking about Jack Wilson.  Apparently the deadline version of the deal died when the Bucs asked for Craig Monroe.  Really?  The deal died over that guy?
  • Gordon Edes has a Major League source indicating that the Orioles are "the kind of team that might have interest" in Wily Mo Pena.  That’s not the same as saying that they do have interest, however.

Cubs Considering Outfielders

Multiple readers have emailed me about a radio report on WSCR 670 The Score out of Chicago today. According to the report, the Cubs are considering multiple trade possibilities to fill the monthlog gap left by Alfonso Soriano’s quad injury.  On the radar: Craig Monroe, Matt Stairs, Jeff Conine, and Adam Dunn.  Additionally, Cubs GM Jim Hendry came out and said today that he’s working the phones to find some help.

Contract situations of each player:

Monroe – $1.5MM left in ’07, should earn $5MM+ in ’08 before reaching free agency
Stairs – $267K left in ’07, free agent after season
Conine – $630K left in ’07, free agent after season
Dunn – $3.3MM left in ’07, free agent after season if traded

Monroe is the right-handed Jacque Jones, contract situation and all.  He’d be a poor and mildly expensive addition.  He’d probably clear waivers.

Stairs is doing what he does best, mashing righties.  He’s having his best season since 2003.  He’s not earning much and has no ’08 commitment.  He played for the Cubs in ’01 and did a decent job. The problem?  He might be claimed off waivers before he gets to the Cubs.  Jim Hendry really should’ve made this deal in July.  Every AL team will have a crack at him first on waivers.  Plus the Jays might fancy themselves contenders at six games out of the wild card. 

Conine is on the last leg of his career and doesn’t really offer anything Matt Murton doesn’t.  I don’t really see the point but this pickup seems most likely.

Dunn is the most intriguing and also by far the least likely option here.  The Cubs would have to give up some good players and pay out a decent chunk of salary for less than two months of Dunn.  They’d also have to do something ugly like put him in right field when Soriano comes back.  I don’t see this happening. 

Tigers Trade Rumors: Barmes, Dotel, Qualls

The Detroit Free Press has a Tigers update for us today.

  • The Tigers are intent on acquiring a backup shortstop.  They recently sent a scout to watch the Rockies’ Clint Barmes at Triple A.  Barmes is at .310/.374/.464 in the minors this year.  Perhaps the Tigers envision him as a possible successor to Carlos Guillen at short.
  • Relievers on the radar: Brad Lidge, Chad Qualls, Octavio Dotel, and Kyle FarnsworthEric Gagne does not seem likely right now, and we know Lidge is a long shot.  Farnsworth might make the most sense, as the cost would mainly be money.
  • The article names Craig Monroe plus pitching prospects Dallas Trahern and Jair Jurrjens as players the Tigers would trade.  Despite all that we’ve read, I’d be surprised if the Royals could get something better than Jurrjens for Dotel.